Monday, October 29, 2012

Halloween 2012 : the breakdown

Hi! I'm here to give a breakdown of the Halloween photos that were posted yesterday. I had to plan everything in advance since we only had ONE chance to photograph Blee.

My main concern for the shots was the lighting. I drive by the Torrance Fire House every morning on my way to work, and most days the sun is shining right at the front of the building. I usually leave for work around 7:20am. This meant that I had to get there BEFORE 7:20am to avoid the harsh sun that would possibly beam right into my son's eyes. BEFORE 7:20am ON A SATURDAY. Arg.

We could have also photographed him in the late afternoon to avoid the sun, but I was worried that Blee would get way too distracted by the cars driving by. The Fire House is stationed right on the corner of 2 super busy streets, so in order to assure that Blee would look right into the camera, I had to do it before the sun came up.

So, at 7am we were ready to go.

The 2 lenses I planned to use for this session were the 85mm 1.8 and the 16-35mm 2.8L. The 85mm is a portrait lens, and creates a nice, soft blur. The 16-35mm is a wide angle lens that produces a slight barrel distortion when used up close.

I used my 85mm first and got these images...

*ISO 320, 1/250, f2.8 for all images*

Then, I busted out my wide angle. The wide angle was crucial for this shot because this was the only way I was able to get the TFD Headquarters sign with Blee (unless of course, I stood in the middle of the street)

*you can see the sun shining on the top of the building. Makes me crazy!*

The wide angle was also used to get fun close-ups of Blee. I usually don't like to use this, but it definitely gives a "I'm having crazy fun" feel to the images.

The whole thing was shot in less than 10 minutes. It involved a lot of "look over here!" "keep your hat on!" and "You can have juice when we get home!"  It also involved us singing Gangnam Style over and over...and over.

Oh, the things we do...

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Halloween 2012

I’m not a big Halloween person. I never was. As a kid I cared so little about Halloween that I think I was a ninja 3 years in a row. A red ninja. My brother was a black ninja. The costume was homemade by my mom and I think we even carried the same sword 3 years in a row. Kinda sad, eh?

In 2010, Blee was only a month old, so I didn’t even bother with getting him a costume…but my friends and family did! Jimmy’s aunt gave us a cute pea costume, our neighbor loaned us a peacock bunt, and my co-worker gave us a pumpkin outfit.

Last year, I was determined to find something cute, original, and cheap. So, as with everything these days, I turned to Pinterest. I saw several that I liked, but was not convinced…until I came across this…

This year, Blee is a firefighter. He was initially going to be a piece of toast, because that’s what he likes. Toast with butter or syrup. Don’t ask. We quickly moved on to a trash truck driver. He likes them too. He chases the trash trucks with my mom around the block and is totally fascinated with them. I went online to look for a jumpsuit and wanted to get the Torrance City Waste Management embroidered around the arm portion. But then, it was impossible to find an appropriate jumpsuit for a 2 year old.

So, we turned to Target. Target is awesome. We found the cutest firefighter suit for our little boy. Blee loves fire trucks as much as trash trucks. Can you tell?

I love this kid.

Tomorrow, I'll be posting all my camera settings and will be sharing the reasoning behind the 2 lenses I chose for this shoot. (And why we took these photos at 7:00 AM!)

Happy Halloween!


Saturday, October 27, 2012

pinterest kitchen : holiday wreath

I've been wanting to make something Halloween-y for awhile. In the past 5 years of marriage, we have accumulated a lot of Halloween goodies, but none that are homemade. Although all the  random junk knicknacks are adorable, I really wanted to make somthing this year. After contemplating what would be the easist and fastest project, I decided to make a Halloween wreath. I got my inspiration from several Pinterst pins like this one and this one.

Here's what I did...

*Straw wreath from, fabric/mummy/cat from Joann*
I first cut (more like ripped) the light burlap fabric into strips of 3-4 inches and hot-glued it around the wreath.
Then, I made a bunch of fabric rosettes. Tutorials can be found here. This was probably the most time-comsuming part of the project, although it wasn't as painful since I was watching Survivor while crafting.
The rest was pretty easy. I tied the mummy and the cat on the wreath and printed "Happy Halloween" on white cardstock. I then used a needle and black thread to make the bunting.

I'm pretty proud of my result, considering this was my first try. This website also has a TON of different wreaths, if you are looking for more ideas and samples.
Happy crafting!

Monday, October 22, 2012

pinterest kitchen : pumpkin pie fudge

It's pumpkin season! Today, I'm here to share a super easy pumpkin pie fudge recipe I found here.
I love this recipe because it only requires 5 ingredients...
Hershey's pumpkin kisses, Nutella, marshmallow creme, sweet condensed milk, and chocolate chips *not pictured, because I didn't realize I needed it until, oh, right before I needed it*

1. Melt the whole bag of kisses, a can of sweet condensed milk, and a cup of chocolate chips. *the original recipe calls for white chocolate chips*

2. Give a spoonful to your little helper.

3. Pour the melted deliciousness into a pan lined with wax paper.

3. Scoop some marshmallow creme and Nutella in a bag and pipe it on top. Swirl with a knife.

 4. Chill in the fridge for a couple of hours.

That's it! Super easy, super yummy, super sweet.

MIA...and loving it

I’ve been a little MIA lately. I’ve been having way too much fun on the weekends with friends and family. That, in addition to preparing for the holiday season got the best of me. I thought about my sad out-of-date blog several times, but I would much rather eat great food and hang out with my besties than to sit in front of the computer.

With that said, I want to share all the good times we’ve been having. In photos, of course.

In no particular order...

We finally made it to the Boiling Crab. 3 pounds of seafood goodness. NBD.

We went and see Jimmy's cousin play baseball. He pitched for an inning. As Blee would say, "cool tuff!"

This little guy was mesmerized.
After the game, we drove over to Bruxie for some waffle goodness. I got the strawberry cheesecake waffle and Jimmy got the turkey sandwich.
We also participated in the CHOC Walk. We walked in the memory of our little buddy, Pierce. It was amazing to see the strength within his family and friends. I remember getting a call from his uncle just a year ago saying he passed away. There were times during the walk when I got teary thinking about the little guy. Thank you to all my friends who donated!

We went to the Pumpkin patch across the street from us. I was pleasantly surprised to see a petting zoo, a jumper, and pony rides.

Last Thursday was Parent Conference for my work. My little boy hung out in my classroom until daddy was able to pick him up. Isn't he the cutest?

Exactly a week ago, I met my friend Christine's baby, Little S. She came a week earlier than her due date. I'm in love with her already!

We had a playdate with our friend T. Out of all the toys, the boys decided to just sit and read books. The teacher in me totally approves their choice, but the mom in me makes me think, "BORING!"

We've been working on Blee's Halloween costume. What started off as this... now this. Just a little more to go!

miscellany monday at lowercase letters

Sunday, October 7, 2012


My goofy, silly son. These images make me smile. BIG.


Happy Monday!